The Sunday Post (Inverness)
Jurgen Klopp believes Mohamed Salah proved his genuine world class all over again with his “exceptional” hat-trick in Liverpool’s win at Bournemouth.
Cherries boss Eddie Howe hailed Egypt hitman Salah as “one of the best in the world” and Reds manager Klopp was quick to commend that view.
Klopp reserved special praise for Salah’s second goal, where he rode out Steve Cook raking his studs down his Achilles to angle home in style. He said: “Whatever you do in a football game you need someone to finish it off, and what Mo did around his two goals in the second half is just exceptional.
“I don’t know many players who would score those two goals.
“The first in the second half was a foul actually, but he wants to score, stays on his feet and still scores.
“It’s very good for us; it’s just really brilliant what he did, I love that mindset. His desire to score goals is obvious; nobody should be surprised about that. And his third goal is outstanding again. Really how he set it up and all that stuff, that was good.” Liverpool punished Bournemouth’s early sluggishness when Salah tucked home from Roberto Firmino’s spilled shot, but replays confirmed the Egypt hitman was offside.
The visitors killed any hope of a home recovery straight after the break, with the ruthless Salah shaking off that crude challenge from Cook before angling home in style. Bournemouth’s hefty loss deepened when Cook lost his bearings and unwittingly flicked into his own net on the turn.
Salah then sealed his fine hat-trick, Cook slipping in confusion with the Egypt striker turning Begovic inside and out before tapping home.
In hailing Salah’s match-winning showing, Howe admitted frustrations with the way his side slipped off the pace after the interval.
“He looked very good, his movement was very good, he was razor-sharp, we did struggle to handle him; he’s one of the best in the world,” said Howe. “We were well in the game at 1-0 down and I thought we were set up to have a really good second half.”